NC State’s Keatts on loss to Virginia: ‘It’s a thin line between winning and losing’
N.C. State is making a habit out of comebacks and close calls.
On Tuesday night against No. 3 Virginia, the Wolfpack couldn’t quite pull off its second straight nailbiter.
Kyle Guy’s late stepback 3-pointer lifted the Cavaliers to a 66-65 overtime win over No. 23 N.C. State.
The Wolfpack, coming off of a dramatic buzzer-beating win over Clemson on Saturday, erased a 14-point deficit in the second half.
Markell Johnson’s free throws with 29.7 seconds left in regulation tied the game at 55. He had a chance to force a second overtime but missed one of three free throws with 0.9 seconds left in overtime with N.C. State down 66-63.
Ty Jerome had a chance to win the game in regulation for Virginia but missed a baseline runner. Johnson grabbed the miss and the game went into the extra period.
The teams traded baskets and free throws in overtime until Guy made a difficult, contested shot from the corner in front of Virginia’s bench for the 64-61 lead at 1:59 in overtime.
For most of the night, it was Virginia’s kind of pace and Virginia’s kind of grind-it-out game. De’Andre Hunter led the Wahoos (19-1, 7-1 ACC) with 15 points for their 12th straight regular-season game win over N.C. State (16-5, 4-4).
The Wolfpack hasn’t beaten Tony Bennett’s Cavaliers since the 2013 ACC tournament and has never beaten UVa during the regular-season during Bennett’s 10-year tenure.
N.C. State is one of the fastest teams in the ACC and wants to play up-tempo. Virginia wasn’t having any of it.
The Cavaliers dominated the first 10 minutes but only led by four, 27-23 at the half.
Jerome helped Virginia stretch its lead out to 42-28, at 12:13 in the second half, before the Wolfpack was able to put a dent into it.
Torin Dorn made a reverse layup at 2:31 to cut Virginia’s lead to 53-50 and then used a turnover by Jerome to set up a transition basket and make it 53-52.
Wyatt Walker went to the foul line for N.C. State with 1:29 left and made one of two free throws to tie the game at 53.
Second-year N.C. State coach Kevin Keatts now has 4-2 record against the AP top-10 teams with both losses to Virginia.